The eastern portion of the Wawa Geologic Sub province has had a long history of prospecting and exploration. Four of the six greenstone belts in this portion of the Wawa Sub province; Schrieber-Hemlo, Michipicoten, Mishibishu, and Gamitagama are situated north and along the shore of Lake Superior, between Heron Bay to the west and Wawa to the east, a distance of 150-kilometers. They have been intermittently prospected and explored since the 3rd quarter of the 19th century. The original discoveries at Hemlo in 1944 were subsequently explored and drilled over a 40-year period. Nine drill campaigns in this period, totalling 130-drill holes (Wilson, 2009), culminated in the discovery, by David Bell geological consultant to Corona Resources, of the ore-zone that was developed by the mine bearing his name. Since first production commenced in 1985 to present, 3-mines, the Williams, Golden Giant and David Bell have collectively yielded in excess of 26-million ounces of gold.
The discovery of the Hemlo ore-body in the Schrieber-Hemlo greenstone belt spawned staking and exploration in the other greenstone belts and by 1989 the Mishibishu belt, located 73-km southeast of the Hemlo gold camp, was described as “a mini Hemlo camp” (Brown, 1989)1. Significant discoveries and development associated within the Mishibishu greenstone belt, referenced to the companies involved in the 1980s, included; the Mishi-Magnacon Mine (Windarra–Musocho-Flanagan), Mishi Lake project Main Zone (Granges Exploration), Eagle River gold project (Central Crude Ltd.).
Table 5. Significant Gold Deposits in the Mishibishu Greenstone Belt
Proven+Probable Reserve, Dec. 31, 2010
Proven+Probable Reserve, Dec. 31, 2010
Cautionary Note; The quantities and grades reported for the Mishi-Magnacon complex and the Eagle River mine were sourced from respective current corporate websites. The authors have not been able to verify the information beyond that which is posted on the websites.
The Mishi Lake project and the Mishi-Magnacon deposits occur within the Mishibishu Deformation Zone (MDZ); Kitrinor Metals’ Feather River-BayView property covers a section of the eastern portion of the MDZ.
Prospectors discovered gold north of Mishibishu Lake, with the first gold recorded showing found by Charles Haultain near Macassa Creek.
Erie Canadian Mines discovered copper mineralization northeast of Katzenbach Lake. Hollinger Consolidated Gold Mines, Macassa Mines Ltd and Erie Canadian Mines Ltd optioned gold claims in the area of Mishibishu Lake.
Northwest of what is the current Feather River-BayView property a gold showing was discovered by Amichi Gold Mines. The showing was reported to host a quartz vein up to 90-cm wide that returned an assay of 29.83 gpt gold. This showing was explored by various companies over the next three decades. It was drilled by Amichi Gold Mines and Westfield Minerals Ltd., but no major mineralized quartz veins comparable to that found on surface were intersected. In 1983 Westfield Minerals Limited drilled IP anomalies on the property but no significant gold mineralization was encountered. Most of the early gold prospects of the area were recognized to occur within a wide shear zone containing minor pyrite and associated quartz veins.
Reconnaissance geological mapping was completed by the Division of Mines, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (formerly the Ontario Department of Mines and Northern Affairs) resulting in the publication of two preliminary uncoloured maps in 1969.
In 1977 geological report GR 153, with coloured maps, was published by G. Bennett and P. Thurston of the Ontario Division of Mines.
After the gold discovery at Hemlo, the Michipicoten Greenstone belt was subjected to a staking rush that culminated only after all of the land between Heron Bay and Pukaskwa Provincial Park was staked. Subsequent exploration and prospecting resulted in several noteworthy gold discoveries.
MacMillan Energy Corp. completed an airborne regional geophysical survey over the Mishibishu Lake area resulting in the delineation distinct exploration targets.
Prospecting Geophysics Ltd. was commissioned to conduct a prospecting, geological mapping and soil sampling program north and west of Katzenbach Lake. The eastern part of the survey covered part of the Feather River claim group. A number of gold geochemical soil anomalies were delineated north of Mishi Lake. A gold occurrence north of Katzenbach Lake was discovered that returned a grab sample which assayed 6.51 gpt (0.19 opt). The occurrence was found in a zone of sheared and altered mafic and felsic volcanic rocks. Detailed geochemical sampling was conducted over specific areas of the zone of shearing; the best values were anomalous ranging from 100-120 ppb.
Prospecting Geophysics Ltd.’s 1984 fall field program was designed to identify diamond drill targets. Part of this program involved a soil survey that extended onto the current Feather River property; anomalous gold in soil values less than 200 ppb were obtained. A well-defined conductive zone outlined by a VLF-EM survey was delineated to extend eastward from the Mishi Lake zone and remained open at its east end. The conductor was interpreted to be situated along the contact between the mafic and felsic volcanic (Bergmann 1985).
A follow-up to this program prompted MacMillan Energy Corp to contract Prospecting Geophysics Ltd. to do additional geochemical soil sampling on three grids. Part of what was referred to as the east grid covered a portion of the Feather River property. The survey resulted in one highly anomalous values of 2,870 ppm gold (Bergman 1985). The sample site is geo-referenced within the southeast sector of the Feather River-BayView property. Other samples in the same area outlined a weak northwest trending geochemical anomaly northeast of the area known as ‘Mile Out’ swamp.
MacMillan Energy Corp signed a joint venture agreement with Granges Exploration Ltd. and in 1986-87 Granges (the operator of the joint venture) drilled 104-holes totalling 20,610-meters, (67,619-ft). Eighteen of these holes are located within the boundaries of the current Feather River-BayView property. Seven of these holes were drilled along the Main zone; the best hole was M-160, it intersected 4.71 gpt gold over 5.18-meters; this included an interval grading 20.47 gpt over 0.9m, at a depth of 135.94-136.86 ft.
Five holes (M78, M100, M102, M130 and M131) collared beyond the Main zone did not intersect significant mineralization.
Six holes (M136, M137, M162, M167, M168 and M169) were collared to test the Harper showing. Four of the holes intersected gold mineralization associated with arsenopyrite mineralization. The best intercept was form hole M162 which yielded 1.53 gpt gold along 23.17-meters.
The Ontario Geological Survey (OGS) contracted a helicopter-borne AEM survey over the area with DIGHEM Surveys and subsequently published Map 81023 which covered the Feather River claim group.
Granges Exploration Ltd. drilled three holes (M428, M429, M430) totalling 220.5-meters along Schist Creek west of the Feather River gold zone. The drilling intersected sections of sericite-fuchsite-carbonate-pyrite-(graphite) schist that hosted geochemically anomalous gold values that ranged from 100-990 ppb over core intervals of 0.5 to 12.0-meters, (see Appendix-C).
Granges Inc. contracted DIGHAM Surveys to fly a 1,414-kilometer Dighem V airborne electromagnetic, magnetic and VLF-EM survey over all of their claims in the Mishibushi Lake area. The main purpose of the airborne survey was to identify geophysical signatures similar to that of the main mineralized gold zone on the Mishi property to the northwest. Part of the western areas of the survey covered sections of the Feather River property which outlined an anomalous area designated as “Zone D”. This zone consisted of a strong east-southeast trending resistivity low with at least four thin magnetic and strongly conductive linears. The magnetic correlation indicated pyrrhotite as the source of the conductor.
Mishibishu Gold Corporation and MacMillan Gold conducted mechanical stripping totalling about 5,300 square meters on three separate areas on Line 29W of the M-5 grid. 22-channel and/or grab samples were taken from the three sites. No significant gold results were reported.
Mishibishu Gold Corp conducted a prospecting and geological mapping program on selected areas of the M-5 grid based on results of a previous geochemical survey. Most of the work was done east of the Feather River claim group, but there was limited sampling and mapping on the eastern part of the existing claims between lines 22E-29E. The best gold value was from sample 123634 taken south of the 900 base line that returned an assay of 649 ppb Au.
In 2007 Norcanex Resources Ltd flew a helicopter-borne high-sensitivity magnetic survey in the area. A total of 358.5-line-kilometers covering an area of 15-km2 were flown covering 75% of the southern part of the property. The purpose of the survey was to acquire high-resolution magnetic data to map the geophysical characteristics of the geology and structure in an effort to provide an insight into geologic and geophysical settings conducive to gold mineralization.
As a result of the survey, five positive linear anomalies where further exploration was recommended were identified on the magnetic map. Linear anomaly B-B extended southeast into the property while linear anomaly E-E stopped just short of the southeast boundary of the property. In addition there were two discrete dipole-type features identified just east of the property boundary.
The survey also located several magnetic trends and highs on the Feather River property. Some magnetic trends appeared to follow the various water courses. Based on the 2010 exploration work by Racicot, one of the magnetic highs appeared to be specifically related to a very magnetic gabbro and a nearby outcrop of iron formation.
In May, reconnaissance prospecting was conducted by Frank Racicot to locate the gold showing grading 6.51 gpt (0.19 opt) that had been referred to in geological mapping by MacMillan Energy in 1985, and to examine a soil geochemical anomaly site in the western part of claim #4235157. Prospecting of Granges Exploration 1987 drill site was also conducted.
In November, a second round of reconnaissance prospecting was performed by Racicot in the area where Granges Exploration drilled 7-holes next to the Feather River. Most of the drill hole collars were located with enough accuracy to determine the original lay-out of the drill set ups.
A total of 37-grab samples were taken. Only three samples had values >100 ppb Au. They were:
#260104 272 ppb Au
#260119 160 ppb Au
#260132 219 ppb Au
In May, Racicot revisited the area due east of Feather River where the majority of the grab samples were taken in 2009. The Mile Out soil anomalous area was also investigated and a grab sample from the area returned an assay of 1,200 ppb gold. A petrographic report by Sinclair and an assessment report by Campbell were prepared.
During November and December of 2011, Kitrinor Metals Inc., undertook a Mobile Metal Ion (MMI ™) soil survey over a portion of the Feather River-BayView property. 1,279-soil samples were submitted to SGS Lab for multi-element geochemical analysis. Three clusters of anomalous gold response ratios were identified by the survey.
Work History Summary: Feather River –Bayview Property Area